Have you ever heard that turning over on a memory foam mattress is like rolling out of a rut?
This would tend to happen in colder climates or in a bedroom that has been left cold for a couple days while you’re gone. When you lay on a memory foam mattress that’s cold, you tend to make a body impression that is deep and much like a mold.
However, as you lie on the mattress for a while, your body heats up the temperature-sensitive material, causing it to “flow out” around the edges and eliminating or greatly diminishing the feeling of being in a hole.
While it’s not a good idea to use an electric blanket on a memory foam mattress, you can use one on a very low setting to warm your bed after being gone for extended periods during cold weather.
Most people don’t notice any difference when turning over on my memory foam mattress vs. a spring mattress.
You need to know the best memory foam thickness but the thickness of the mattress, itself, is only a matter of personal preference. Some people prefer the 13″+ mattresses and others feel just fine with an 8″ mattress.
An 8″ mattress is probably the minimum you would want to sleep on for any length of time because under the memory foam, there are various layers of standard foam that also contribute to the support.
The only thing affecting the quality of support is the density and amount of temperature-sensitive memory foam that’s on top. You should look for a mattress that has at least 3 to 3 1/2″ of memory foam and no more than 5″ of memory foam.
Always ask for the amount of memory foam on a mattress. Just because a mattress is thicker doesn’t mean it has more memory foam.
A 13″ thick mattress might only have 3″ of memory foam while a 12″ thick mattress could have 4″ or 5″ of memory foam. The best memory foam thickness is the one that allows you to sleep, turnover and get out of bed without bottoming out onto the base foam beneath.
Why shouldn’t you use a mattress pad with a memory foam mattress?
First, you should define what is meant by a mattress pad. Some people refer to a memory foam mattress topper as a mattress pad and others would be speaking of a pad that is used on a mattress which has about a half inch of cotton and is designed to make a firm mattress feel a bit softer to sleep on.
When speaking of a memory foam mattress, you would not want to place a mattress pad on it that had any kind of cotton or other cushioning material in it because you are lessening the way the temperature sensitive memory foam is designed to work. The memory foam softens under your body when your body heat is absorbed into it.
Therefore, none of the memory foam mattress manufacturers recommend using a mattress pad with your memory foam mattress.
There is a waterproof mattress protector that has been tested and approved by most of the major manufacturers for use with the memory foam mattresses because it was designed specifically to allow your body heat to transfer through to the mattress. The material that is under the top layer acts much like our human skin to allow air to breathe from the bottom up but doesn’t allow moisture to penetrate from the top down.
When you invest in a memory foam mattress it only makes sense to also invest in protecting it. A high quality memory foam mattress protector will do that job for you so you don’t have to worry about such things as:
- pet stains
- kids accidents
A memory foam mattress topper is a two inch to four inch thick piece of memory foam that sits on top of your mattress to give you a softer, more supportive surface to sleep upon. So, now you know that the term mattress pad has many meanings.
People have been sleeping, for years on the edge of their memory foam mattress and it’s never been a problem. It was only after a marketing company dreamed up this issue that it became a concern. Some of these imagined problems are suggested by someone so they can sell you their mattresses.
Having said that, keep in mind that, if you buy a super cheap memory foam mattress, you could have that problem simply because the memory foam isn’t dense enough to support your body correctly. If you buy one of those mattresses, you won’t have to worry about sleeping out to the edge because you won’t be getting any support for you back and the back ache will drive you back to the mattress store to find a different mattress.
Some of the memory foam mattresses now incorporate an “edge support system” to allow you to sleep right out to the edge. Many of these edge support systems replace the outer 4 inches memory foam with some type of poly foam so they are actually giving you less memory foam.
This isn’t the case with all of them but, you should always check because it’s cheaper for them to make a mattress with less memory foam.
NASA Memory Foam
The foam that was originally formulated for NASA actually wasn’t suitable for mattresses, that was just a sales gimmic used by a few companies to sell their mattresses. The foam in the space capsule was much firmer because it was used as a chair, not a mattress.
It’s only after several years of research and improvement that the foam was developed for memory foam mattresses. Most memory foam mattress products that are made from temperature-sensitive, 5-6-pound density foam are considered “NASA” foam.
Looking For A High Quality Memory Foam Mattress or Topper?
There are many factors that could affect the quality of memory foam, but the major one is where the memory foam, used in the mattress, was poured. The other things that you must find out are:
- What is the density of the memory foam?
- How thick is the layer of memory foam?
Where was the memory foam poured?
You need to know that the memory foam was poured in America because the formulations are controlled by various regulatory agencies against the use of known carcinogens and other harmful substances. Foam poured in China and many other foreign countries can contain ingredients that are not healthy for you to be exposed to, especially in a mattress where you will spend around a third of your life sleeping.
These foreign manufacturers aren’t monitored like the ones in America so you might find your mattress stinks and sleeps hot because the formulation includes toxic chemicals.
What is the density of the memory foam?
Memory foam density is critical because the density of the memory foam determines what the quality of the memory foam is and how well it will support your body while you sleep. It also indicates how long the mattress will last. 4 lb. memory foam density is usually considered the minimum density for a memory foam mattress topper or a mattress with 5 lb. density being the best.
Again, foreign poured foam won’t usually feel like you would expect quality memory foam to feel like because foreign manufacturers may use clay additives to give the memory foam a falsely higher density. This destroys the composition of the memory foam and will make it sleep very firm and cause it to fail much sooner than the true density foam.
How thick is the memory foam layer?
In a memory foam mattress, there are layers of foam which determine how the mattress will feel. The top layer or top couple of layers, is memory foam and the lower layers are “base” foam. You need to find a mattress with at least 3″ of memory foam on top of the base foam.
Buying a high quality memory foam mattress requires a bit of knowledge but remember knowledge is power so jot down these tips when you begin shopping so you don’t end up with a nightmare in place of a good night’s sleep.
These are the basic guidelines when shopping for a memory foam mattress if you want to be sure you get a high quality memory foam mattress.
Many People Think That A Memory Foam Mattress Will Sleep Hot.
In the earlier days of memory foam, with the NASA type memory foam formulation, this was more of a problem than it is now. Memory foam is an open cell foam so it allows air to pass from one cell to the other and then expels it from the mattress.
Old fashioned, regular foam, which is a closed cell foam, tends to hold heat next to your body and thus, makes you sleep hot. Think of each one of those cells as a tiny balloon and all of the cells in the mattress as millions of tiny balloons. The air inside them has no place to go so it just keeps building up heat the longer you lay on it.
Also, memory foam that is poured in foreign countries might sleep hot because they use many unknown chemicals in their formulations so you don’t even know if it’s an open celled foam. Or if it is, what those other chemical might have done that causes the open cells not to pass air between them as readily as American poured foam. Sleeping on a memory foam mattress or topper might make you sleep hot.
In the past this kind of foam was used for mattresses in RV’s mostly and it made people sweat when they slept on it. Now, with the advances in memory foam technology, you will not sleep hot.